As an avid Food Network fan, I don’t think there are any shows on the network that I haven’t seen yet, and when shows like Eat St come out with cookbooks, I’m usually the first in line. I’ve seen them come, and I’ve seen them go. Along the way, a few stand-outs have really become favorites of mine; one of which of course is Eat St. Back in August of 2011, as we explored food trucks and food carts around California while we watched shows like Eat St and Great Food Truck Race, I followed along with some of my favorite foodie bloggers and thought, “why am I not doing that?”
From Television Screen to Your Kitchen Counter – Eat St the Cookbook Arrives
In January, Paperny Entertainment, the show’s producer announced that Eat St was nominated for two Canadian Screen Awards. A week later, another huge announcement. Eat St is coming soon to a bookstore near you. Paperny Entertainment teamed up with Penguin Canada to create Eat St., a companion cookbook based on the hugely popular television series. Written by the show’s globetrotting host James Cunningham, Eat St. is now available in bookstores in Canada and will soon hit the shelves in the U.S.
Tried and true American foodies in the know and in search of a good bargain have already found their way to the Amazon store for discounted pre-orders. The book is on sale for 30% off on Amazon until April 2 when it officially launches in the U.S.
I received my copy a few weeks ago – seeing James on the cover was like receiving a giant post card in the mail from a traveling friend. James, an admitted terror in the kitchen, may not possess the culinary know-how to boil an egg, but he knows good food when he sees, smells, hears and tastes it. Like a bloodhound hot on a scent, James Cunningham has popped up in as many cities as Martha Stewart has napkin designs.
With a great introduction to a culinary adventure, James opens Eat St with a bit of a background on the show and the exploding food truck phenomenon that’s literally taken the continent by storm. The book takes foodies through seven sections, including Mobile Snacks, Burgers, Dogs & Slices, Ultimate Street Sandwiches, Tacos, Wraps & Cones, Soups, Noodles & Saucy Things, Curbside Meals, and Sweet Wheels (you didn’t think it wouldn’t include desserts, did you?). James finishes the book with some very thoughtful words of gratitude that really make you realize how much effort and dedication have gone in to both the TV show and the book.
The first thing I noticed about this book, other than its sheer volume (this is one very packed cookbook), were the extraordinary photos. This is seriously Triple-F-Rated food porn, and if watching the episodes doesn’t make you hungry, the book is designed to stop you dead in your tracks. In fact, several of the photos of food trucks, people and mouth-watering street eats in Canada were taken by Eat St Media Correspondent, Sean Neild. A born and raised Vancouverite, Sean has taken the time to find some of the best food that Vancouver has to offer. With a background in the video game industry, Sean has taken his love of technology and applied it to his love of photography and good food by creating Sean’s Adventures in Flavor Town. He also contributes to Eat in, Eat out and EatinginVancouver.
Nacho Grande Poutine – Smoke’s Poutinerie, Toronto, Ontario
I couldn’t wait to try something out of this street foodie’s ultimate cookbook. I wanted to pay homage to James, and since he’s Canadian, I was all over the Nacho Grande Poutine recipe from Smoke’s Poutinerie like a monkey on a muffin. And just like the episode that aired last June, I felt like I spent some quality eating time at Smoke’s, where the poutine is made with cheese curds imported from Quebec and topped with everything from grilled chicken to Italian sausage to green peas.
Poutine is officially pronounced, poo-TIN, but it’s widely acceptable to pronounce it as, poo-TEEN, especially if you’re American. Either way you say it, you’re bound to get a reaction. It’s a gut-busting, artery-obstructing, colon-clogging French Canadian concoction of french fries, gravy, and cheese. James describes poutine as “a proud Canadian dish that combines all the heart-stopping power of melted cheese curds and gravy with the healthy benefits of a plate of deep-fried potatoes.” The guys at Smoke’s Poutinerie are so serious about their poutine, they actually grow their own potatoes.
This poutine smelled so good, and I couldn’t stop myself from nibbling on the cheese curds, I actually forgot to top it with the sliced jalapenos. But that’s OK, because this is Eat St – if it’s messy, tasty and irresistible, James won’t mind.
Season four of Eat St premiers on Food Network, Canada and the Cooking Channel in the US in April. Check your local listings, and grab your copy of Eat St the companion cookbook so you can watch along with me in your own kitchen this season.